IGF 2018 WS #175 Legislation as code with a global digital common: OpenFisca

Format: 

Other - 90 Min
Format description: Fishbowl (see more: http://www.kstoolkit.org/Fish+Bowl)

Organizer 1: Matti Schneider, mattischneider.fr
Organizer 2: Pagnoux Florian, OpenFisca

Speaker 1: Fraser Hamish, Government, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
Speaker 2: Wallace Brenda, Government, Asia-Pacific Group
Speaker 3: Chakroun Sandra, Civil Society, African Group
Speaker 4: Ben Jelloul Mahdi, Civil Society, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
Speaker 5: Thomas Guillet, Government, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)

Relevance: 

How can a publicly funded digital product become a reusable foundation on which global, multi-stakeholder innovation can happen?

This proposal may or may not build on prior workshops at the IGF, I haven't been able to search through its history.
It does built upon years of presenting OpenFisca, and upon a published white paper on digital commons governance: https://communs.mattischneider.fr.

Session Content: 

The aim of this session is to present how a global digital common can be evolved from a single country's investment in a digital innovation by betting on collaboration with civil society. The case studied is OpenFisca, a tool transforming legislation into code and making it computable, enabling to build applications that help citizens and companies assess their rights in any tax and benefits system.

In this session, the facilitator will first introduce each participant with a short demonstration of a tool they built with OpenFisca. This demonstration will be done by the facilitator to ensure strong timing control, for a total of under 5 minutes.
We will then go quickly (~10 minutes) through the history of OpenFisca, as told by the interweaving of all participants' personal relationship with it and facilitated by the organiser.

Clarification questions will then be asked for a maximum of 10 minutes. The aim of that first part is to make sure all of the initial presentation content is clear to all participants, whatever their cultural and professional background, so that the rest of the discussion can be easily followed by and participated in by all. The facilitator will ensure diversity of questions.

With this level of background, the facilitator will then open the panel into a fishbowl.
That means the facilitator will leave his chair, and invite all people in the audience to join the conversation whenever they feel like it (more details given in “discussion facilitation”).

The issues discussed will thus mostly depend on the participants, but it is expected that the following topics will be covered:

- Difficulties in transforming legislation into code.
- Opportunities for social and sustainable development.
- Benefits and difficulties of common governance.
- Replicability of experience in other country groups.
- Ethical implications of making law computable.

Interventions: 

Each speaker will come from a different country and/or stakeholder type and history with the tool (with the exception of New Zealand, for whom the distance makes it hard to send only one representative). Their perspective will be by definition unique. The fishbowl format will ensure that they, as well as unknown experts in the audience, get an opportunity to talk whenever they feel they can contribute to the discussion.

Diversity: 

Participants will each represent their experience from a single country (with the exception of New Zealand, for whom the distance makes it hard to send only one representative).
Participants will come from both government and civil society, showing how the digital common is fed and used by both efforts.
I aim for a strong nationality diversity and for gender parity, but it is hard to guarantee that until all speakers have confirmed their participation, which can only happen after the session has been confirmed. #loop
The clarification + fishbowl format will ensure that all participants can contribute to the discussion.
The facilitator will also ensure there are at least two representatives from each gender in the fishbowl at any given time and will encourage national diversity, by prioritising exits of overrepresented groups.

Online Participation: 

We will stream the whole session on appear.in.

The online moderator will take note of requests to ask clarification questions from the remote audience as they are typed through the chat component of that tool. The questions will be asked ordered on a first-ask, first-answer basis (at least at the beginning, there might be some adjustment at a later stage to ensure diversity), and the remote queue will be merged with the physical queue. When a remote participant is asking a question, s·he will go full screen on the projector and all the audience will hear them.

During the fishbowl part, one seat in the fishbowl will be reserved for remote participants. They will share that seat: only one remote participant will be able to participate in the discussion at a time, and the online moderator will ensure this rule is followed, by identifying queuing participants through the chat component, and rotating the full-screen face of the currently active participant.

At the end of the session, references to additional material will be projected, and an offer will be made to join a mailing-list and a Slack team to keep the conversations going.

Discussion Facilitation: 

The initial introduction will ensure all speakers have presented their history (and thus one nation's) for a roughly equal amount of time.

During the interactive part, clarification questions will first be asked for a maximum of 10 minutes. The aim of that first part is to make sure all of the initial presentation content is clear to all participants, whatever their cultural and professional background, so that the rest of the discussion can be easily followed by and joined by all. The facilitator will ensure diversity of questions.

After all clarification questions have been answered, the fishbowl will be opened by the facilitator leaving their chair.

One chair will always be left empty: if someone joins the conversation, someone else has to leave it. This will ensure rotation of participants, equal participation opportunities, and audience engagement.
The facilitator ensures there is always an empty chair (mostly by tapping silent participants on the shoulder if they forget to leave their seat), and will have a set of questions ready in case the conversation slows down.
The facilitator will also ensure there are at least two representatives from each gender in the fishbowl at any given time, and will encourage national diversity, by prioritising exits of overrepresented groups.

The fishbowl technique is described more in details here: http://www.kstoolkit.org/Fish+Bowl.

At the first opportunity in the last then minutes, and at the latest five minutes before the end, the facilitator will join the fishbowl and lead to a conclusion, wrapping up learnings and thanking the audience.
Upon closing, references to additional material will be projected, and an offer will be made to join a mailing-list and a Slack team to keep the conversations going.

Onsite Moderator: 

Matti Schneider

Online Moderator: 

Florian Pagnoux

Rapporteur: 

Matti Schneider

Reference Document: https://openfisca.org

Contact Information

United Nations
Secretariat of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF)

Villa Le Bocage
Palais des Nations,
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland

igf [at] un [dot] org
+41 (0) 229 173 678